Another investor conference presentation at UBS on Wednesday, with Alios 2158 Phase 1B data due at anytime this month, possible data from VX 787 Phase 2A trials treating influenza, and the announcement of advancing Alios nuc(s) into Phase 2 all-oral clinical studies combined with VX 222 and or Incivek or ribavirin, or another company's complementary oral agent (e.g. BMY's Daclastavir) to treat the various subpopulations of GT 1 hep C . Biotech has been getting hot again among institutional investors (look at the price of Vertex, Gilead, Amgen the past few weeks) and short interest from hedge funds has been shrinking. I suspect, even without any new pipeline announcements this week, we'll be over $60 in the next few days.
Another investor conference...... another disappointment. Where do you start with the problems with the call?: Ian Smith is the world's dullest presenter and wasn't helped by the fact that they had nothing new to say. Oh wait, there was news- They continue to be shocked by the rapid decline in Incivek revenues and now realize an all oral regimen is the future of HCV treatment. Influenza data "sometime this year"- in other words delayed. And the most disturbing aspect of the presentation? Absolutely no mention of 2158. Eerily reminiscent of the death of the epilepsy program; no announcement, just silence.
I would agree that the last two investor conference presentations by Ian Smith were not very exciting, but the Alios 2158 study was mentioned in the Q&A of the MS conference and the timing of the release was confirmed to be in September, so we can anticipate some news next week on this front. The way the stock has been behaving, I am hopeful for another postive result. This will be taken as another confirmnation for the future participation of Vertex in the develpment of all-oral GT 1 hep C treatment regimens. I noted that the timing of the release of the VX 787 influenza data was mentioned in last week's UBS presentation as later this year, but that does not imply any delays or setbacks in the development of this drug. The epilepsy durg gets no mention but is still in devleopment and the clincialtrial.gov website still lists the VX 765 seizure disorder trial as continuning to recruit patients at mutiple study centers acrss the country.
As Vertiy mentioned in her post, the North American CF meetings in Florida starting October 11 will likely be a time for further announcement from Vertex about the progress it's making in the ongoning clinical studies in expanding the use of Kalydeco monotherapy to as many as 20% of the Cf population, It may also give updates on the progress of clinical trials treating CF patiients who are homozygous for delta 508 mutation with combination therapy with VX 809 or VX 661 and Kalydeco. Patience with this stock is paying off (even with the drop in Incivek sales, there is a steady cash flow from both Incivek and Kalydeco which continues to fund the company's R&D pipeline), and the stock is acting fairly strong (just 10% off it's 52 week high) going into the final week of this quarter. Good luck to all.
I've never listened to an investor conference by anyone but Vertex so I have no way to compare the style or content. And I wasn't able to listen to Q&A for the last one b/c they changed rooms and it wasn't recorded. BUT, from the questions from the previous week's one, the investors there aren't on their game either. No one asked at the prior conference re the Arm 3 new dosing of the combo 2x and 3x a day. And I wonder if anyone asked at this conference about the new Phase 2 for Kalydeco which if you look at the inclusion criteria seems broad enough to include nearly anyone who has any channels at the cell surface and that this could get almost 20% of the CF population included in the label. More information will be hitting the public in the next month with the CF conference so I expect a higher uptick coming again soon.